Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Euphemisms and Lessons Learned

While I am having a very hard time wrapping my head around the fact that it is OCTOBER, we happen to be having unseasonably warm weather this week -- temps are in the 80s, so the fact that the year has flown by so quickly is a little easier to take.

The leaves are also almost in full peak colors, so it is really, really beautiful outside.

Unfortunately, I've had to spend the bulk of every day working -- but I have been able to get on my bike and to walk outside a bit each day.

Tomorrow, I also get to spend the day on the golf course, playing a round as part of a Community Support event sponsored by the company I work for....I'm very, very much looking forward to this. I really need a little time to be outside and to breathe.

The stress level has ratcheted up in a big way since Ironman.

I work for a big company. I've worked for this big company for a lot of years. I've been happy, productive and successful.

I've been lucky.

I found out shortly before the race that, in an effort to "reduce redundancies and increase efficiencies", that my position was "mapped" to a new work team. And, although I've been "mapped", I haven't yet been "selected", meaning I may have a job; I may not.

I didn't have a choice. The group I worked for didn't have a choice. I just got the call one day from HR and that was that.

On the one hand, I am grateful that I'm still in the game, so to speak. I haven't been "displaced". It is "business as usual" for the time being, until the yet-unsubstantiated "selection" process is defined.

But nothing about this is usual. I don't know what criteria will be used to determine if I have a job or not (meaning do I interview? Do I have a choice about the job? The work?). I don't know, if I get "displaced", what terms will be presented to help keep me afloat.

I've been told that I shouldn't worry. That with my talent, my skills and my abilities, that I'll have a job and all will be well.

Yet, every day that goes by, I find out about other talented, skillful colleagues have been offered a "package" and are out the door. Lesson: there are no guarantees.

I'm resentful because I didn't ask for this. I'm resentful because I'm worried and there are less qualified people that remain with the business that aren't in this position at all. I'm resentful because the recession, which was supposed to be over a long time ago, isn't. I'm resentful because the politicians just keep playing politics, instead of getting real work done.

(I mean really: debate of gay marriage? Why aren't they creating jobs? Looking at alternative energy? Looking at education reform? Changing any thing of real importance? WHY IS BACHMANN GETTING ANY ATTENTION at ALL?).

I know that I'm not the only person that has gone through this over the last few years. I have been lucky to have a job through some very rough economic periods. I'm lucky that I have no debt (outside a mortgage payment) and that Hubby's job seems secure for now. The best luck I have on my side, though, is my health, for without that, I'd be really in trouble.

I should know by the end of October which direction Compass will point me...I'll either have a job or I won't. I just have to hold on and to try not to let the stress get too much of me.

In the midst of all of this, I decided to hire a new Coach --Actually, he is an "old" coach of mine. I used him when Nat and I trained for our first half ironman.

I've been lucky to work with a lot of really great coaches over the years. The coach that I used for the last two years is utterly awesome. Love him. But, I never felt that I was an athlete that was in his league. The most of his folks are podium finishers; die-hards; naturally talented.

I struggled this last year to get much attention from him and by the time Imoo rolled around, I was well trained, but felt incredibly detached from him, and honestly, that hurt a lot.

Right before I left for Madison, out of the blue, I received an email from my half-iron coach. He sent me good luck wishes for a great race.

When I was out on the run course, he was there, cheering with the crowds. He spotted me and came out to give me a great big hug. He knew, based on the clock, that I was cutting it close, but he gave me a little pep talk and sent me on my way.

When I got back to Minneapolis, after my DNF, I thought for a L O N G about what my plan for 2012 should be. I decided to go back to Greg. We started our training plan this week.

I guess what I've learned from this experience, that it is very hard to "fire" someone. I struggled for a long time about moving from one Coach to another.

When the time came, I just had to tell the truth, though. That it was better for me to work with someone that could provide me more attention; that worked more effectively with people of my ability and skills. That it was nothing personal.

Lesson learned: If I see HR show up at my office with "that look", I hope they can tell me the truth and not try to just cover the facts with a lot of pretty words.

Oh. And it's just business. It's nothing personal....